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Healthy People 2020: Dentists and Diabetics

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The Centers for Disease Control ( have maintained data on diabetics and gum disease (we call it “periodontal disease”) for years because people with poorly-controlled diabetes (A1C>9%) are prone to severe periodontal disease. In fact, their data reveals that 1/3 of people with diabetes also have severe periodontal disease. People who smoke and have elevated glucose levels most of the time have a 4.6 times greater risk for it.

Hyperglycemia also causes dehydration, so the mouth has less liquid combating the acid production that causes cavities to develop. Diabetics experience more oral candidiasis, also known as Thrush, which is a fungal infection in the mouth. They can also get oral lichen planus that inflames the lining inside the mouth, causing a burning sensation and pain.

Now you see why dentists are concerned. It turns out that treating and preventing periodontal disease is actually very important because “perio” has a negative effect on glycemic control so it increases the risk of complications like neuropathy or retinopathy.

Contact Winterset Dental to schedule your appointment.